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6 Great Ways To Boost Your Home Wi-Fi

You can control your Wi-Fi's performance more than you probably thought you could.

Waiting for pages to load gets old really fast, especially if you’re trying to pull up directions on Google Maps and you’re already late for that dinner date with your friends.

Thankfully, you can control your wi-fi’s performance more than you probably thought you could.

We only have what the cable companies allow us to work with, which is often outdated and overpriced systems and cables. So, take back some of that power, and use these six tips to boost your home wi-fi, so that you don’t have to wait on that next episode of “Breaking Bad” or “House of Cards” when you’re trying to get your binge watch on.

1. Use The Latest Wi-Fi Technology

Make sure you’re using the most up-to-date hardware, including routers, cables, and wireless type. According to Lifehacker, wireless A, B and G are old and slow, and wireless N (and an even newer type called wireless AC) will give you the fastest speeds. So make sure that when you’re asking your internet provider about wireless you are getting the best wireless speed for your money. For example, basic FiOS Quantum internet through Verizon is the same price per month as basic DSL.

wifitech

2. Place Your Router In The Right Place

No, that doesn’t mean it can go under the sink or hidden behind your bookcase. Instead, for the best wireless connection, you should put your router on a flat surface of the floor, near the center of your home, if possible, according to Entrepreneur. If you can get your router up high, that’s even better. Having a wi-fi router near dense brick, stone or concrete can hamper the signal. To make sure that your router’s signal can penetrate walls, make sure the antennas are perpendicular to each other and directly pointed at walls, not at an angle, according to Lifehacker.

router

3. Use The Right Wireless Channel

To reduce interference from other nearby wi-fi networks, change the channel on your wi-fi to either one, six or 11, depending on your router’s specific instructions, according to Entrepreneur. If you switch channels and still have a poor signal, test out other channels until you find a better one. Lifehacker also suggests using Wi-Fi Stumbler or Wi-Fi Analyzer to find the best channel for your home.

wifianalyzer

4. Buy A High-Gain Wi-Fi Antenna

This is a super cheap way to increase your wi-fi strength long term without upgrading to a more expensive plan, according to Entrepreneur. You can get one for about $15 and they can extend your wi-fi strength to hard-to-reach corners or closed-off parts of your home. The one below is a Cisco-Linksys High Gain Antenna Kit, available on Amazon for $11.95. You can also DIY a wi-fi strength-enhancing antenna.

antenna

5. Try To Minimize Interference From Other Appliances

Surprisingly, cordless phones, microwaves and other appliances can all interfere with your wi-fi strength, according to Lifehacker. If you think your appliances might be interfering with your wi-fi signal, try moving your router to a new place, away from those appliances. If that doesn’t help, maybe consider buying a dual-band router.

microwave

6. Make Sure Your Network Is Secure

Lock people out of your wi-fi network with better security. This means coming up with a complicated password or using a WPA password, but apparently even those can be easy to hack, according to Lifehacker. So, if you’re really worried about internet-stealing hackers breaking into your internet and messing with your signal strength by using your wi-fi, then Lifehacker has a list of steps you can take to strengthen your wi-fi’s security.

hacker

Want more fun facts about the internet, including: how much time do Americans spend on the Internet on average and how much energy is required to run the web?  Check out this short video:

Images: Thomas Backa, Chris Kelly, John Paul Bader/Flickr; LifehackerWi-Fi AnalyzerCisco-Linksys High Gain Antenna Kit/Amazon

Main image: mista stagga lee/Flickr

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